Bill Cosby, who fell from grace as “America’s Dad” to convicted sex offender, was sentenced Tuesday to three to 10 years in state prison.
The 81-year-old comedian was convicted in April of drugging and sexually assaulting Andrea Constand, a former Temple University women’s basketball administrator, who testified Cosby violated her at his Pennsylvania home in 2004 after she came to him for career advice.
Cosby, renowned for his role as Dr. Cliff Huxtable on “The Cosby Show,” had been accused of sexual misconduct by dozens of women, but was only criminally charged in Constand’s case. Cosby is the first star of his caliber to be convicted of sexual assault in the age of #MeToo.
The actor has repeatedly denied all allegations of sexual misconduct. He had faced up to 10 years in prison.
Judge Steven O’Neill, the judge presiding over the sentencing hearing, ruled earlier Tuesday that Cosby is a “sexually violent predator.”
The distinction under Pennsylvania law means Cosby will have to undergo monthly counseling, and register with police if he moves so that neighbors and schools will be alerted if he lives nearby.
Cosby asked if he would have to register if he travels to another city overnight. He was told he would.
Cosby was also given a chance to speak in his defense on Tuesday, but declined. When he was asked if he wanted to add anything, he said, “I don’t need any more discussion on that.”
The defense did not call any character witnesses, and Cosby’s wife, Camille, was not in court Monday.
Cosby’s lawyers argued he should serve his time on house arrest, given his age.